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721030 - Lecture NOD - Vrndavana

His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

(note: this page was previously: 721031 - Lecture NOD - Vrndavana)

721030ND-VRNDAVAN - October 30, 1972 - 39:18 Minutes

Pradyumna: 21.

Prabhupāda: Hmm.

Pradyumna: "In the Caitanya-caritāmṛta, by Kṛṣṇadāsa Kavirāja Gosvāmī, Lord Caitanya states that it is a fortunate person who comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master by the grace of Kṛṣṇa. One who is serious about spiritual life is given by Kṛṣṇa the intelligence to come in contact with a bona fide spiritual master."

Prabhupāda: Yes. Here it is stated, "It is . . . it is a fortunate person." Not the unfortunate. "It is the fortunate person who comes in contact with a bona fide spiritual master." This question we were just discussing before coming to the class, how to select a bona fide spiritual master.

So that is not very difficult. Just like in our ordinary business life, we accept somebody as representative of the firm who is actually come, canvassing for the benefit of the firm. He's representative. Suppose he's representing some book-seller, publisher, so he should canvass for selling the books published by his firm, not for anything else. Suppose he has taken the advantage of becoming representative of a business firm but he's doing his own business, he's not bona fide. He's not bona fide.

So real guru is Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa . . . aham eva āsam agre (SB 2.9.33). Kṛṣṇa existed before the creation. Then He made His representative, Brahmā. Tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye (SB 1.1.1). He instructed the original guru, Brahmā. Because there was no other living creature, except Brahmā, in the beginning of creation, and He instructed Brahmā. Tene brahma hṛdā ādi-kavaye. There are other versions in the Vedas, that He instructed Brahmā. So therefore, the original guru is Kṛṣṇa.

The same guru, Kṛṣṇa, is instructing Arjuna also. Kṛṣṇa became guru of Arjuna. Arjuna accepted Him guru: śiṣyas te 'ham (BG 2.7). Arjuna said: "Now I am not talking with You as friend, but I accept You as my guru." Therefore, by śāstric conclusion, Kṛṣṇa is the original guru. Who can deny it? Kṛṣṇa is jagat-guru. He's guru of everyone, because everyone accepting the authority of guru, er, Kṛṣṇa. Anyone is accepting the authority of Bhagavad-gītā, he's accepting, imperceptibly, Kṛṣṇa as guru. Therefore, bona fide spiritual master means who is representing Kṛṣṇa. Who can deny it?

So to find out a bona fide spiritual master is not very difficult job, because if one is representing guru, Kṛṣṇa, then he must speak of Kṛṣṇa, canvass for Kṛṣṇa. What do you think, Visanjī?

Indian man: Jaya, Mahārāja.

Prabhupāda: So that is bona fide guru. Where is the difficulty to find out a bona fide guru? Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, yāre dekha tāre kaha kṛṣṇa upadeśa (CC Madhya 7.128). Caitanya Mahāprabhu says that, "You preach the words of Kṛṣṇa." Therefore He's bona fide. Similarly, anyone who is representing Kṛṣṇa and canvassing for Kṛṣṇa, he's bona fide guru. Where is the difficulty? Is there any difficulty? Anyone can understand that if Kṛṣṇa is the original guru, and if somebody's canvassing for Kṛṣṇa, he's bona fide guru. If somebody canvassing for himself, he's not bona fide guru.

So there is no difficulty to find out a bona fide guru, provided I am serious to find out a bona fide guru. But if I want something else . . . because hṛdy antaḥ stho hy abhadrāṇi (SB 1.2.17). If in my heart there is something else, then I must be cheated by some . . . somebody else who is not a bona fide guru. Ye yathā māṁ prapadyante tāṁs tathaiva bhajāmy aham (BG 4.11).

So to find out a bona fide guru, spiritual master, is not very difficult. It is very easy. Kṛṣṇa says explicitly, evaṁ paramparā-prāptam imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ (BG 4.2). This knowledge, Vedic knowledge, is received by paramparā system. Just like Kṛṣṇa said to sun god:

imaṁ vivasvate yogaṁ
proktavān aham avyayam
vivasvān manave prāha
manur ikṣvākave 'bravīt
(BG 4.1)
evaṁ paramparā-prāptam
imaṁ rājarṣayo viduḥ
(BG 4.2)

Kṛṣṇa said that, "This yoga system, first of all I explained to the sun god, and he explained to his son, Manu, and Manu explained to his son, Iṣkvāku. In this way, by the paramparā system, by the disciplic succession, the knowledge is coming." Sa kāleneha yogo naṣṭaḥ parantapa. But as soon as it began to be explained by others, without being in the disciplic succession, in the chain of disciplic succession, speaking the same truth, it becomes broken. Sa kāleneha yogo naṣṭaḥ. Yoga naṣṭaḥ. It is spoiled.

If one does not come in the disciplic succession, he'll spoil the teaching. That is being done. So-called commentator, teacher of Bhagavad-gītā, he does not come in the disciplic succession, he is self-made guru. Therefore he's not guru. Self-made guru cannot be guru. He must be authorized by the bona fide guru. Then he's guru. This is the fact. Here . . . nobody can be self-made anything. A medical practitioner, he cannot become self-made, that "I have studied all the medical books in my home." No. "Have you ever gone to the medical college and taken instruction from the bona fide teachers?" Then, if you have got the certificate, then you are medical practitioner.

Similarly, bona fide guru means he must be authorized by the superior guru. Just like Caitanya Mahāprabhu says, āmāra ājñāya guru hañā tāra' ei deśa (CC Madhya 7.128). He must receive the order from the superior. And the superior must be bona fide. Then he's bona fide, not self-made. Tasmād guruṁ prapadyeta jijñāsuḥ śreya uttamam (SB 11.3.21). The direction is that one must go to a guru. But who is guru? Śābde ca pare ca niṣṇātaṁ brahmaṇy upaśamāśrayam. These are the description.

So to find out a bona fide guru is not difficult, provided one is bona fide to search out a guru. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu said, guru-kṛṣṇa-kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja (CC Madhya 19.151). By the mercy of guru and Kṛṣṇa . . . because by the mercy of Kṛṣṇa one gets a bona fide guru, and by the mercy of bona fide guru, one gets Kṛṣṇa. This is the process.

When I am actually serious to have connection with Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa is sitting in everyone's heart, īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ hṛd-deśe 'rjuna tiṣṭhati (BG 18.61), so Kṛṣṇa can understand. We cannot hide anything from Kṛṣṇa. That is not possible. Because Kṛṣṇa is sitting side by side, just like two birds, sitting side by side. One bird is eating the fruit of the tree; another bird is the witness. That is the Vedic version. So as soon as I become serious to know about Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa can understand, "Now My friend is very serious." So He will find out a bona fide guru for him.

Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu says that guru-kṛṣṇa-kṛpāya pāya bhakti-latā-bīja (CC Madhya 19.151). By the . . . by the double mercy . . . Kṛṣṇa's mercy and guru's mercy. If one is serious, Kṛṣṇa is satisfied: "Now he's serious about finding out, about knowing Me," then Kṛṣṇa gives him direction that "Here is guru, My representative. You take shelter of him and you will get Me." This is the way.

That is explained in this . . . that by the grace of Kṛṣṇa, that it is a fortunate person. Fortunate person means he must be sincere, serious to know about Kṛṣṇa. That is fortunate. Because our misfortune has begun by forgetting Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa bhuliya jīva bhoga vāñchā kare (Prema-vivarta). When we desire to enjoy this material world, forgetting service of Kṛṣṇa, that is the beginning of our misfortune. That is the beginning. Because as soon as I forget Kṛṣṇa, that is the beginning of my misfortune.

So in order to be . . . in order to become again fortunate, I have to become Kṛṣṇa conscious. That is the way. The same . . . by some way or other . . . anādi-bahirmukha jīva kṛṣṇa bhuli gela ataeva kṛṣṇa māyā . . . ataeva māyā tāre galila baddhiya (CC Madhya 20.117). Some way or other, we forgot Kṛṣṇa. Unfortunate because we are, even we have got this opportunity of remembering Kṛṣṇa, we are trying to avoid Him. We are bringing so many nonsense things: "Why not this? Why not that? Why not . . .?" This is misfortune.

Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityaja mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). But we are presenting, "Why not this? Why not that? Why not this? Why not that?" This is our misfortune. Why? Kṛṣṇa says, mām ekam. Why shall I try to put another alternative? Why? What is the reason? That is our misfortune. Kṛṣṇa is offering the fortune: sarva-dharmān parityaja mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja. This is fortune. But I'll not take that. Kṛṣṇa says: "Get up . . . give up all other engagements. Simply take shelter of Me. I shall give you all protection." But I don't believe Kṛṣṇa; therefore it is my misfortune.

This fortune, to become fortunate and misfortunate . . . just like in English word, "Man is the architect of his own fortune." Is it not? "Man is the architect of his own fortune." But if you, as you are architect of your own fortune, you are architect of your own misfortune also. So if you don't accept Kṛṣṇa's advice, then you must consider yourself unfortunate. We should be cautious: "Why shall I become unfortunate? I must become fortunate." So that, to become fortunate, is not very difficult thing. All these Kṛṣṇa consciousness people, they are fortunate. They have taken Kṛṣṇa's advice as it is, without any change. They're fortunate. And that is being manifested, that they are fortunate.

So this is the process. By the grace of Kṛṣṇa, if we are sincere and serious, then Kṛṣṇa becomes kind upon us and gives direction: buddhi-yogaṁ dadāmi tam. "I give them buddhi-yogam." Buddhi means intelligence. So here, everyone has got intelligence. At least, he thinks that he is very intelligent. Everyone thinks. Although he's fool number one, he thinks himself as very intelligent. Because intelligence is there. But when the intelligence is used for material fortune, that is unfortune. When intelligence used for developing Kṛṣṇa consciousness, that is fortune.

So we can set up our own fortune or misfortune. The fortune means that we must be serious after hearing about Kṛṣṇa. One must be serious. Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). So if we are intelligent, we should seriously think over this proposal. Why Kṛṣṇa says: "Give up everything and surrender unto Me"? There is sufficient reason. If one has seriously studied Bhagavad-gītā, there is sufficient reason to surrender unto God, unto Kṛṣṇa. Everywhere.

That . . . those who are karmīs, Kṛṣṇa says unto them, yat karoṣi yaj juhoṣi yad aśnāsi kuruṣva tad mad-arpaṇam (BG 9.27). Karmaṇy evādhikāras te mā phaleṣu kadācana. This is for the karmīs. And for the jñānīs, bahūnāṁ janmanām ante jñānavān māṁ prapadyate (BG 7.19). After many, many births, the so-called jñānīs, when he surrenders unto Kṛṣṇa, that is success. Sa mahātmā su-durlabhaḥ.

Vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti. By culture of knowledge, by philosophical speculation, if one comes to this point, conclusion, that vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti (BG 7.19), Vāsudeva, Kṛṣṇa, is everything, then he's jñānavān, real jñānavān. That is real . . . jñāne prayāsam udapāsya namanta eva (SB 10.14.3). He must be submissive. That submissive means, "Yes, after cultivating knowledge, my Lord, Kṛṣṇa, I have come to this conclusion, that You are the Supreme Absolute Truth. I bow down my head upon Your lotus . . ." That is real jñāna. That is jñāna. Otherwise, ajñāna.

But they are accepting ajñāna as jñāna. To accept ajñāna as jñāna is the most unfortunate position. That is not jñāna. Real jñāna is how to surrender to Kṛṣṇa. So this is jñāna. For yogī, this instruction also is there. Karmī, jñānī, yogī and bhakta. There are four classes of men, transcendentalists. They're all transcendentalists, culturing spiritual . . . that's . . . that's all right. But even in the spiritual cultivation there is superior, inferior. Not exactly superior or inferior, because that is the material. But still there are classification.

This classification is ended when one comes to know Kṛṣṇa. Yasmin vijñāte sarvam evam vijñātaṁ bhavanti (Muṇḍaka Upaniṣad 1.3). If one understands Kṛṣṇa, then Paramātmā and Brahman becomes automatically known. Sarvam evaṁ vijñātaṁ bhavanti. Just like if you have got one hundred thousand dollars, ten dollar is within it, fifty dollar is within it, five hundred dollars is within it.

So in the Bhagavad-gītā everything is discussed there—jñāna-yoga, karma-yoga, dhyāna-yoga, buddhi-yoga, so many yogas. But Kṛṣṇa says, sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66), ultimately. That means, "If you surrender unto Me, all these yogas are included." All these yogas—karma-yoga, jñāna-yoga, dhyāna-yoga—all yogas are included. Yoginām api sarveṣāṁ (BG 6.47).

That we have to understand. We have to become fortunate to understand this philosophy. Kṛṣṇe bhakti kaile sarva-karma kṛta haya (CC Madhya 22.62). This, this philosophy . . . if, if one surrenders to Kṛṣṇa, if one becomes Kṛṣṇa conscious, then his karma-yogī, jñāna-yogī, dhyāna-yogī, haṭha-yogī, everything. Everything is included there.

He hasn't got to practice separately karma-yoga, dhyāna-yoga, jñāna-yoga, haṭha-yoga. Everything is there. The haṭha-yogīs, they can display many wonderful things, but kṛṣṇa-bhakta, without endeavoring for all these things, Kṛṣṇa can show many magic on his behalf. Why should he take trouble himself, to play the magic himself? Kṛṣṇa will show how magical things are performed by the devotees. Kṛṣṇa will show.

Just like small child, he doesn't require to earn money for spending. If he's rich man's son, his father will take care of him. Similarly, a devotee does not endeavor to become expert in jñāna-yoga, dhyāna-yoga, haṭha-yoga, this yoga. He depends on Kṛṣṇa. And when some yogic mystic power has to be shown, Kṛṣṇa will show that. That is the process, bhakti-yoga. You take to Kṛṣṇa, and everything will be done, Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa says, ahaṁ tvāṁ sarva-pāpebhyo mokṣayiṣyāmi mā śucaḥ (BG 18.66): "Don't worry. I shall take care of you."

So therefore the conclusion is that one who is fortunate, he can take to Kṛṣṇa consciousness cent percent, without any deviation. That is wanted. Go on.

Pradyumna: ". . . then by the grace of the spiritual master, one becomes advanced in Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In this way the whole jurisdiction of Kṛṣṇa consciousness is directly under the spiritual energy—Kṛṣṇa and the spiritual master. This has nothing to do with the material world. When we speak of Kṛṣṇa, we refer to the Supreme Personality of Godhead along with His many expansions."

Prabhupāda: Yes. Kṛṣṇa is not alone. Just like when we speak of the king, although it is singular number, "king" means there are so many others. There is the queen, there is the minister, there is the secretary, there is the commander-in-chief, there is bodyguards, there are so many other things. Similarly, when we speak of Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa means His expansions.

He has got different types of expansion—svāṁśa and vibhinnāṁśa. Svāṁśa expansion is viṣṇu-tattva. Kṛṣṇa is the original person. Ahaṁ sarvasya prabhavaḥ mattaḥ sarvaṁ pravartate (BG 10.8). All others . . . just like Viṣṇu, Nārāyaṇa or demigods, all others, they are all expansions of Kṛṣṇa. We are also expansion of Kṛṣṇa; we living entities, we are vibhinnāṁśa. Mamaivāṁśa. Kṛṣṇa says mamaivāṁśa. Jīva-loka. Jīva-loke: "The all these living entities, they are My part and parcel." We are also expansion of Kṛṣṇa, or the demigods, they're also expansion of Kṛṣṇa. The viṣṇu-tattva, They're also expansions of Kṛṣṇa—everyone.

So Kṛṣṇa means including His expansion, including His energies, including His personal paraphernalia, including His dhāma—everything. That is Kṛṣṇa. Rāmādi-mūrtiṣu kalā-niyamena tiṣṭhan (Bs. 5.39). Tiṣṭhan means continuing to exist. Rāmādi-mūrtiṣu kalā-niyamena—with His expansion, svāṁśa expansion, vibhinnāṁśa expansion.

So Kṛṣṇa is not alone. Kṛṣṇa is not nirākāra. Kṛṣṇa is not impersonal, because He has got so many personal associates. Nityo nityānām. All these personal associates, they're individual person. We are all person. You are person; I am person. We are all individual. I have got my individual opinion; you have got your individual opinion. Oneness means when these individual opinions are coincided in the matter of surrendering to Kṛṣṇa, that is oneness.

Oneness does not mean that all these individuals become one, homogeneous. No. They keep their individuality, but they become one in the service of Kṛṣṇa. That is oneness. Now everyone is working for his sense gratification, personal. When everyone becomes agreed that, "We shall satisfy Kṛṣṇa," that is oneness. That is oneness. One nation. We can understand, one family. One family means they're individual persons, but they're working for the interest of the family—all of them combinedly, conjointly, working. Similarly, they're working conjointly for the society or they're working conjointly for the community or conjointly working for the nation. That is oneness.

When we speak, "We are Indian nation, oneness," that oneness does not mean that every individual Indian has become homogeneous with other Indians. No. Every Indian is an individual person, but he has sacrificed his individuality and engaged himself for the service of the country. That is national consciousness. Similarly, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. As there is national consciousness, community consciousness, family consciousness, so many other consciousness, similarly, Kṛṣṇa consciousness means all persons agree to work for the satisfaction of Kṛṣṇa. That is Kṛṣṇa consciousness. That is oneness.

Oneness does not mean we lose our individuality. Sometimes, individually we fight. Just like in the legislative assembly, our representative, M.P.'s, they go and fight. There is a deliberation. But the purpose is to serve the country. Therefore, instead of the different of opinions, they agree to work in this way. That is legislative assembly.

Similarly, individuality there must be always, but when we find out a one means to satisfy Kṛṣṇa, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, to satisfy Kṛṣṇa, that is oneness. Ekatvam anupaśyataḥ (ISO 7). Eka. That is ekatvam. Why a . . . in other words, ekatvam . . . this is the version of the Īśopaniṣad, ekatvam anupaśyataḥ. Ekatvam anupaśyataḥ. Ekatvam, at the same time, anupaśyataḥ. That means we are all spirit souls. We are part and parcel of Kṛṣṇa. That is anupaśyataḥ. And on this basis, when we find ekatvam, oneness, that is the platform of peace, that, "We are all servant of Kṛṣṇa."

Caitanya Mahāprabhu advised this. Jīvera svarūpa haya nitya kṛṣṇa dāsa (CC Madhya 20.108-109). When we feel that, "Eternally I am servant of Kṛṣṇa, you are servant of Kṛṣṇa," that is ekatvam. Not that we become a lump of thing. No. Impersonality cannot be . . . personality cannot be changed. Jīva-loke. Mamaivāṁśo jīva-bhūtaḥ jīva-loke sanātanaḥ (BG 15.7). This individuality is sanātana, eternal. But when we disagree to serve Kṛṣṇa, that is asanātana, not sanātana. That is artificial.

So here in this material world, we have disagreed to serve Kṛṣṇa. Therefore the whole proposal is again agree to serve Kṛṣṇa. Sarva-dharmān parityajya mām ekaṁ śaraṇaṁ vraja (BG 18.66). This is real philosophy. We disagreed—therefore we came into this material world, and we are fighting with one another. Now again the proposal is the agree to this oneness, ekam. Then there will be peace. Jñātvā māṁ śāntim ṛcchanti. These things are there.

bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ
suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānāṁ
jñātvā māṁ śāntim ṛcchati
(BG 5.29)

We are becoming leaders, the friend of the people. But we are not friend of the people. Kṛṣṇa is the friend of . . . suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānām. If we simply say that, "I am your friend in this sense, that I deliver the message to you that 'Kṛṣṇa is your best friend.' I do not . . . I am friend so far I am giving you this information. But actual friend is Kṛṣṇa," suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānām.

So this is friendship. If one preaches Kṛṣṇa consciousness and teaches everyone that "Kṛṣṇa is your best friend . . ." He does not say, "I am your best friend." "I am your best friend in this sense, that I am giving you this information." Actually, Kṛṣṇa is your best friend. What can I do? I am a teeny living entity. What can I do for you? I be . . . may become your friend, but when you are in danger, I cannot give you any protection; Kṛṣṇa can give you protection.

This is real friendship. He does not take himself. He always carries the message only. Ya idaṁ . . . mad-bhakteṣv abhidhāsyati (BG 18.68). Simply our business is to carry the message of Kṛṣṇa. Then we are friend. Otherwise we are not friend. We may pose to become friend, but we are not friend, because we do not know how to benefit the friend. Sometimes we mislead him.

Therefore our business is to point out that, "Kṛṣṇa is your friend." Suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānām (BG 5.29). "He's the proprietor. Don't claim your proprietorship. You are not proprietor. You are falsely claiming, because what you are claiming as your property, it will be taken away by Kṛṣṇa at the time of your death. Everything will be finished." Mṛtyuḥ sarva-haraś ca aham (BG 10.34), Kṛṣṇa says. Mṛtyu . . . Kṛṣṇa says: "I am death when I take away everything from the person—his life, property, body and everything."

Actually, we claim, "This is my property." This is moha. Ahaṁ mameti (SB 5.5.8). Lokasya janasya moho 'yam. This is friendship, to educate people that, "You are not proprietor. Kṛṣṇa is proprietor. You are not enjoyer. Kṛṣṇa is enjoyer. You are seeking out friends to give you protection. Kṛṣṇa is the supreme friend who will give you protection." If we spread this message all over the world, then I am friend of Kṛṣṇa and friend of the person. Otherwise, I am not friend.

Because I cannot become friend. I can simply carry . . . just like post peon gives you five thousand rupees, delivers. He does not deliver; somebody else is delivering. He's simply carrying. That's all. Similarly, if we simply carry the message of Kṛṣṇa as it is, we become perfect. It is not very difficult. If I simply carry the message of Kṛṣṇa, where is the difficulty? Everything is there. Kṛṣṇa has said everything. Kṛṣṇa says, man-manā mad-bhakto mad-yājī māṁ namaskuru (BG 18.65). We carry this message. Just always think of Kṛṣṇa, always offer obeisances to Kṛṣṇa, become a devotee of Kṛṣṇa. Man-manā, think of Kṛṣṇa always. We have to carry this message. Where is the difficulty?

So to become a bona fide spiritual master there is no difficulty, simply if we carry the message of Kṛṣṇa as it is, without any adulteration. So we must find out a person who is actually bona fide spiritual master by this test, that he's not, I mean to say, adulterating Kṛṣṇa's message. He's not playing havoc with the message of Kṛṣṇa in order to introduce himself, his person. He's simply presenting the message of Kṛṣṇa as it is. Then he's spiritual master. Nobody else.

Thank you very much.

Devotees: Jaya. (end)